Campfire restrictions in place on national forests

• Seasonal safety regulations for building campfires are in effect on the Wallowa-Whitman, Umatilla and Malheur national forests. Visitors are required to build their campfire in a fire pit surrounded by dirt, rock, or commercial rings, in areas cleared of all flammable material within a three-foot radius from the edge of the pit and free of overhanging material. A shovel and one gallon of water are required to be in your possession while building and tending campfires. These requirements also apply to the use of charcoal briquettes.

The seasonal regulation, which took effect Wednesday, does not prohibit the use of campfirest; it only designates proper conditions for safe campfires.

Umatilla River

• Spring chinook season is open, catch rates have been fair with anglers averaging about 5.5 hours/per chinook landed. The catch has been an early morning bite. River flows are extremely low and will warm quickly as air temperatures rise, anglers should plan to fish early and late in the day.

Malheur Reservoir

• The reservoir dam was repaired and started holding water again in November of 2015 but very few fish were expected to survive in the reservoir from last year. This is because the reservoir completely dried up this past summer. Malheur Reservoir is filling up and there is a portion of the boat ramp that is submerged so it may be possible to launch boats this spring. The reservoir has already been stocked with legal-sized and fingerling rainbow trout to jump start the fishery following prolonged drought conditions in the region.

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